1. Trent Murphy looks “totally different”
Trent Murphy played in 13 games with 10 starts his first season with the Bills. Murphy is healthy after a full offseason and looks “totally different” says teammate Lorenzo Alexander.
“He looks totally different,” Alexander told Matt Parrino of NYUP.com. “A lot of that is obviously being healthy and he’s not second guessing or thinking about, ‘Oh, this thing is tight today. (Or) If I make this move I might pull it.’ He’s fully locked in right now, fully healthy and I’m enjoying it because I work with him a lot.”
Sean McDermott echoed that sentiment in a press conference earlier this offseason.
“He just looks like he’s in a different mental space,” McDermott said. “Another year removed from where he was last year when we first got him here and there’s a lot that goes into that. ... Just what I’ve observed is he’s obviously worked his butt off before he came back here, and he’s worked his butt off since he’s been back. You watch him from a leadership standpoint, leading in his own way probably different than others but effective nonetheless.
“He is a big part of what we plan to do and affecting the quarterback. I just really appreciate what he brings to the table. It’s no surprise having met his family recently and to watch the way they think work ethic is so important in their family. Trent really embodies that.”
2. Game slowing down in year two for Tremaine Edmunds
Tremaine Edmunds has emerged as a leader of the Bills defense despite only playing one season with the team. The 2018 first-round pick still has a lot to learn but finds the game already slowing down for him during training camp this year.
“It’s slowing down but I feel like I have a lot of room left to grow and that’s just going to slow it down more,” Edmunds said. “It’s got to come out every day and continue to get better as a team as we strive towards out goals.”
Edmunds has cited communication as key for his success. Lorenzo Alexander has been a solid veteran voice in his ear and it helps that he’ll be playing with the same linebacker unit this year.
“We just communicate,” Edmunds said. “It’s all about defense playing as one, so as long as we are all on the same page when everybody’s playing out there we’re good to go.”
As Edmunds enters year two of his NFL career he wants to focus on controlling what he can control. He says there a lot of expectations he holds himself to and his goal every day is to go out and improve on something and strive toward excellence.
Photos of the Bills signing autographs for fans during opening week at St. John Fisher College. Camp autographs are presented by Eaton Office Supply.
3. McDermott doesn’t believe in injury prone label
The Buffalo Bills signed cornerback Kevin Johnson this offseason. A first-round pick in 2015, Johnson has struggled with injuries his first few seasons on the field but knowing his history and situation, head coach Sean McDermott was comfortable signing the cornerback.
“I would start with communication,” McDermott said. “Just awareness around our building of what each player, not only in Kevin’s situation but in all our cases, is getting out in front and addressing those issues. We have a tremendous medical staff and sports science department that’s put together to help us make guys better here than maybe they’ve been elsewhere.”
McDermott shrugged off the notion of players having a label of being injury prone but respected the history some players have being able to stay on the field.
“There’s history and that’s a concerning piece,” McDermott said. “In some cases with Kevin sometimes that history tells us future events and that’s what we have to be aware of. At the end of the day availability is key and you have to be a healthy football team.”